Meet Blake Matthews From Barbara DeLeo’s Dishing Up Desire and Giveaway!


Please welcome Barbara DeLeo back to the virtual offices!  She’s brought along a special guest this morning, so please give a big “Hello” to Blake Matthews, hero of Barbara’s latest Indulgence release Dishing up Desire.  After we get to know Blake better, please leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of Contract For Marriage!  You can also enter for a chance to win an Amazon gift card!

[Barbara DeLeo] It’s great to be back at Manga Maniac Café. This time I’ve brought along Blake Matthews from my latest book, Dishing up Desire.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Hi, Blake! Can you describe yourself in five words or less.

[Blake Matthews] Ex-international model. Something to prove

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you share a typical day in the life of Blake Matthews?

[Blake Matthews] No such thing for me. I work with people to totally transform their image. That might be anything from helping an IT entrepreneur sharpen up his wardrobe to giving a politician a few lessons in subtlety and decorum. No two people are the same, so no two days are the same and I like it like that. At the moment I’m working with celebrity chef Kirin Hart to turn her homemaker image on its head and it’s not any easy ask.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words come to mind when you think of Kirin?

[Blake Matthews] Stubborn, sexy, hurting

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What do you find most exasperating about her?

[Blake Matthews] Kirin doesn’t know her own power. She’s built a cooking empire, she has a fan base of millions, and yet at her core she doesn’t trust that those people can see inside to the person she really is. It’s my job to marry the outside version that Kirin presents to the world, with the one that I know lies deep inside her.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If you could change one thing you’ve done in your life, what would it be?

[Blake Matthews] I’d push my brother away from the heater before he got burnt. Changing that moment in time wouldn’t have changed what I wanted to do with my life, but it sure has hell would’ve changed the raging need I have inside to prove everyone wrong.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thank you, Barbara and Blake!


[Barbara DeLeo] I have an e-copy of an earlier book, Contract for Marriage to give away to one lucky commenter, and at the end of my blog tour we’ll be drawing the name of one commenter from all of the blogs to win a deluxe “Dishing up Desire” chef’s apron and a $50 Amazon gift card!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


About the book:

Image consultant Blake Matthews is facing his toughest PR challenge yet: salvage the image of celebrity chef Kirin Hart. Once he does, he’ll be able to acquire LA’s most successful PR firm. But Kirin’s no easy fix. She’s stubborn about changing her comfortable homemaker image, and is being sued for sexual harassment by a junior staffer. She needs a PR lifeline fast. Only problem is Blake wants more than to make her over…

Kirin doesn’t need a makeover—her fans love her as she is. But she could lose everything if the sex scandal and reputation that has followed doesn’t get quashed right away. Kirin agrees to let model-perfect Blake work his magic for two weeks, but things get complicated when she can’t deny the way her body flares to life whenever he’s near.

About the author:

Barbara DeLeo’s first book, co-written with her best friend, was a story about beauty queens in space. She was eleven, and the sole, handwritten copy was lost years ago, much to everyone’s relief. It’s some small miracle that she kept the faith and is now living her dream of writing sparkling contemporary romance with unforgettable characters.

After completing degrees in Psychology and English then travelling the world, Barbara married her winemaker hero and had two sets of twins.

She still loves telling stories about finding love in all the wrong places, with not a beauty queen or spaceship in sight.


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Interview with Kersten Hamilton, Author of When The Stars Threw Down Their Spears

Please give Kersten Hamilton a warm welcome to the virtual offices! Kersten is here to discuss the last book in her Tyger Tyger trilogy, When The Stars Threw Down Their Spears.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Describe yourself in 140 characters or less.

[Kersten Hamilton] A dash Mamieo Ida, a teaspoon Pipi Longstockings, great gobs of Peter Pan, some Severus Snape…. Oh, wait.  You meant a different kind of character entirely, didn’t you? That’s more difficult. Let’s see…a joyful peregrine, a partaker of the deeper magic, a too infrequently penitent knave, and a teller of tales.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us a little about When The Stars Threw Down Their Spears?

[Kersten Hamilton] The Goblin Wars is really one book split into three parts. Can I say a little bit about each?

TYGER TYGER invites readers to step through into a modern world of Celtic mythology and magic; IN THE FORESTS OF THE NIGHT calls them to come further up and further in, and WHEN THE STARS THREW DOWN THEIR SPEARS throws the wide, magical world open before them!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three words best describe Teagan?

[Kersten Hamilton] Compassionate, resourceful, and courageous.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How did Teagan change from when we first met her in Tyger Tyger?

[Kersten Hamilton] Teagan was very young in Tyger Tyger. She has grown — as we all must — through making terrible mistakes and tough decisions.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] If Finn had a theme song, what would it be?

[Kersten Hamilton] Teardrop sung by Newton Faulkner. For Finn, love is a doing word, and he is fearless when it comes to love.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Name one thing Teagan is never without.

[Kersten Hamilton] Now, that’s a toughie.  Never is a very tricky word when it comes to Teagan. Sometimes she can’t carry anything with her at all. If you have read the first two books, you know what I mean. If you haven’t, then I can’t tell you why. Spoilers! How about I tell you Teagan’s theme song instead? It would be Fix You by Cold Play, and she would sing it for Finn because he has lost many things he cannot replace.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things will you never find in Finn’s rucksack?

[Kersten Hamilton] A cell phone, hair products, or anything ever sold by Abercrombie and Fitch. He *would* have a blade or two, and at least one pair of clean socks and a roll of duct tape….

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is Teagan’s greatest regret?

[Kersten Hamilton] Not putting a brick in a certain inner tube once upon a time … just kidding. Her greatest regret is a decision she made soon after she met Finn — a decision she can never change and never forget and will regret forever. 🙂

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What was the most difficult aspect of writing this series?

[Kersten Hamilton] Reaching the end. This story came from deeper inside me than anything I have ever written. It was very, very hard to finish the book. I left my heart on the page when I walked away.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What three things do you need in order to write?

[Kersten Hamilton] Caffeine, faith, and a lot of courage.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] What is the last book that you read that knocked your socks off?

[Kersten Hamilton] FORGET ME NOT by Carolee Dean. Dean uses an incredible mix of screenplay format and poetry, including free verse, villanelle, pantoums, shape poems — and she is always in control of her story. I loved it!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Can you tell us about your next project?

[Kersten Hamilton] Which one? 🙂 I have a fun MG steampunk series called GADGETS AND GEARS coming this fall, some nitty-gritty picture books for itty-bitty readers are in the works, I have a magical reality MG almost done, and as soon as my heart stops hurting, I’m starting a Top Secret YA project.

[Manga Maniac Cafe] How can readers connect with you?

[Kersten Hamilton] People can reach me by email:

from my webpage:

or on Twitter:  @KerstenHamilton

Thank you for interviewing me, Julie!

[Manga Maniac Cafe] Thank you!

Order Links:

About the book:

“People will die.”

Locked doors are opening, and uncanny creatures are tumbling through mysterious portals from Mag Mell, the world-between-worlds, into the streets of Chicago. The Dark Man has marked Aiden with a new song that’s scared him badly, and a frightening new group of sídhe is lurking nearby.

Teagan knows this is war, and she must protect her family. She leaves her flesh and bones behind to join Finn in hunting the evil beings across the city. Meanwhile, their relationship is heating up—almost faster than they can control. But he is still bound to fight goblins his entire life . . . and by blood she is one of them now.

Then the gateway to Mag Mell cracks open again, and the Wylltsons find themselves caught in a trap. As her loved ones begin to die, Teagan realizes that she must destroy the Dark Man and his minions once and for all in order to save those who remain . . .

. . . before it is too late